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Lauren Cummins

Lauren Cummins Automotive Product Marketing Manager

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Is Your Dealership Prepared for the Rise of Subprime Loans in 2015?

Bad credit will be no road block for car buyers in 2015. The number of subprime auto loans are rising, and experts say this will have a large impact on car sales this year.

Equifax expects car sales to soar past 16 million, a huge number when you think about 2009’s 10.4 million sales. So surprisingly, you can thank subprime loans for a little extra love to your dealership bottom lines.

Currently, subprime car loans account for 30% of the overall car loan market according to a report by CNN. Subprime loans spiked last year because dealer financing tended to have more lenient regulations than the average bank or credit union.

So, what immediate impact will this have on your dealership? A rise of inquiries, questions and most importantly, phone calls. Google predicts that calls will increase by 25% in 2015. There’s a few things you can do to help your dealership prepare. 

Have qualified representatives help every customer

If a huge chunk of your customer base in 2015 will need a loan, you need to make sure each caller gets the department that can be the best resource to them. Call your dealership pretending to be a customer interested in a car loan and have your receptionist transfer you to the finance department. If you go to voicemail or get put on hold, you need to make sure there is someone there at all times to walk them through the loan process.

Properly man the phones

This may sound like a simple concept, but the employees in your dealership departments are constantly being pulled in a million directions. Keep your callers from failing to connect with an employee by utilizing a multiring, which will ring every employee in that department’s phone, increasing the odds of the call being answered. Another way to properly man the phones is to, well, have more bodies to man those phones! Maybe it’s time to figure out if you need to grow your team.

Tap into the market that needs an auto loan

Advertising your hassle-free loan approval process could make a great new avenue for revenue. If you decide to take this approach, make it easier for your employees to determine how a caller found out about your dealership in the first place. A whisper will allow you to know where a caller is calling from by placing a tracking number on your Google Places listing, billboard or website. On the phone call, the employee will hear a short sided snippet of audio that tells them the source of the call before the conversation even begins.

Stay on top of market and industry trends to know how to prepare for the next few months or years at your dealership. You’ll be amazed at the impact it’ll have on staff attitudes and your bottom line when you’re ahead of the curve.  

 

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